This project was funded between January 2018 and March 2019.

  • Run by NHS South Central and West Commissioning Support Unit (CSU), in partnership with the Association of Professional Healthcare Analysts, Kaleidoscope Health and Care, and FutureLearn Ltd.
  • Involved the development of a programme to bring together analysts, managers and clinicians across a whole health economy to build a sustainable, self-supporting network of analytical capacity.
  • Face-to-face events and webinars were held, as network participants undertook applied analytical projects relevant to current issues within the health economy.

The future sustainability of health economies in the context of changing demographics, patient expectations and cost pressures is reliant on the ability to assess the prospective impact of change in terms of patient experience, patient outcomes and costs across care pathways.

This approach requires a different type of analysis and different analyst training. This project, run by NHS South Central and West CSU, brought together analysts, managers and clinicians from across the whole health economy in a region, to build a sustainable, self-supporting network of analytical capacity and capability development.

At least one representative from each organisation took part in the network, with a total of 20 participants. Cross-organisational teams also worked on an applied analytical project linked to critical issues for the health economy.

Four face-to-face events and eight webinars were held. Each event featured an external speaker presenting a case study. The webinars featured speakers such as clinical leaders on major projects, national leads on analysis programmes and technical experts. 

In a post-project survey, all participants said they felt that their analytical capability had improved, including their technical as well as professional skills. 

While all participants felt that their project had supported new learning and challenged their thinking, a third of participants felt they had not been able to develop their projects to the extent they had wished. The most common reason for this was not being able to spend time in their project groups between meetings.

The positive feedback suggests that the approach is likely to be sustainable at a team level. However, translating it into system-wide impact would require a more structured approach to projects.

Contact information

For more information about this project, please contact Kate Cheema, Head of Patient Safety Measurement Unit, NHS South Central and West Commissioning Support Unit.

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